Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Listen, Darling. No, this time, actually LISTEN.

What in general has been a very uplifting day was only very marginally blighted by the unavoidable delight of listening to Alistair "Dr Death" Darling (or should that be Alistair "Dr Darling" Death?) drone on, and on, and on, and on, and on for what seemed like hours on end in roughly the following fashion...

"Time is running out for them. There isn't as much time for them as there used to be. They had time, but they've got less of it now. Unanswered questions. Questions that are unanswered. Questions that we have asked and need an answer to. Questions people are asking that haven't been answered. We need the facts. We haven't got the facts. We're still waiting for the facts. Facts are needed. We expect facts. Where are the facts? It's just more of the same. See this? It's the same. And we've just had more of it. It's a greater quantity of the same thing. I'm bitterly disappointed in them. I expected so little, and got even less. People will be thinking to themselves - is this it? Really? No more? Nothing over and above this? After all this time? Just this? This is the best they can do? Truly? Well look. Look here. Now just look. Now just look here. What I'm saying to you is, look here. Yes I heard your question, but what I'm saying to you is, well look. Look here. Now look. Now just look here. You see? If I utter enough variants on 'look' you always forget that you asked me a question. Vote No or the floppy-eared rabbit gets it. By the way, I've just thought of another unanswerable question that hasn't been answered. We need an answer, the people of Scotland demand an answer, and time is running out."

Leaving aside all the standard content-free Project Fear noise, there was one specific point that Darling kept banging on about in every single interview that quite simply didn't make any logical sense. He claimed that the SNP's explanation for why their transformational childcare plans couldn't be delivered right now under devolution was that if women enter the workforce in much greater numbers, they will "pax tax and those taxes will go to the Treasury". He then added that the Treasury passes that money back to Scotland, and asked "how is that a bad thing?". Well, perhaps it wouldn't be if it actually worked like that (although such a pointlessly circular system ought to outrage the "too much government" brigade on the right-wing of the No campaign**), but it doesn't, does it? The Treasury would pass SOME of that money back to Scotland, but it would only be a tiny percentage - indeed that percentage would be less than proportionate to our share of the UK population (because a large portion of government spending is 'non-identifiable', and therefore Scotland does not receive a population-based chunk of it). In other words, we would cover ALL of the costs of the new system from the existing Scottish block grant (potentially diverting funds from health and education), but only receive a tiny fraction of the benefits, thus making it impossible to attain the 'virtuous circle' threshold where the system becomes financially self-supporting.

There are intelligent budgies in Lochmaddy who can understand that very simple logic, but apparently it's all too much for the former Chancellor of the Exchequer. Ah well, he'll be back in the Project Fear crypt for a well-earned night's rest by now, so hopefully the penny will have dropped by the morning.

**The right-wing of the No campaign is of course better-known as "the No campaign".


  1. He does appear to be auditioning for the role of Private Frazer in any remake of Dad's Army.."We're all doomed"

    Perhaps wee Dougie Alexander could be Pike?

  2. Same scaremongering drivel Darling has been spouting for years except he's looking ever more desperate and angry these days.

    There's feuds aplenty in scottish labour. What with Falirk, Brown's breakway "United with Labour" group (a calculated swipe at Darling it's safe to say) and the 2016 scottish election selections. You add to that little Ed ditching yet more Blairites not that long ago and I fear Darling knows his time is running out and he's never going to get a 'big job' at the expenses trough again.

    Little Ed also won't want Darling in the shadow cabinet reminding everyone of the crash when he knows the tories will be hitting him with 'don't let labour ruin it again' every day of the campaign. Something even Darling has surely begun to realise. Other right wingers like Jack Straw standing down in 2015 will also not have pleased Darling one bit any more than Balls looking quite safe where he is.

    Desperate men make mistakes and I wouldn't be surprised if Darling's fraying temper got the better of him sooner of later. The idea that he's the asset that the out of touch idiots on PB think he is will be put to the test just as severely as the buffoon Carmichael is going to be by Nicola Sturgeon.

  3. YOu have to admit though, Mick, it must be frustrating for Darling to have to try to argue the illogical and untrue crap he has for ammunition against an incredibly slick top team from the Yes side.

    Despite the BBC being virtually a part of Better Together and the Scotsman being the in-house magazine, people are beginning to see through the lies.

    A you say Darling sees his career being ended being a failed chancellor and losing the referendum... and worse still, losing out on what he always thought he would end up with as part of his pension: his £300 a day tax free passage to the aristocracy.

    Dreary end to an unspectacular career.

    James. Another excellent and highly amusing piece of which I'm a bit jealous and you can be justly proud.